2009 HUMANITARIAN AWARD WINNER
Washington DC, April 10, 2009 The Hockey Humanitarian Award Foundation announced today that Northeastern University senior forward Missy Elumba (Cottage Grove, MN) is the 2009 recipient of the BNY Mellon Wealth Management Hockey Humanitarian Award.
Elumba is the 14th recipient of the award, which was created to recognize college hockey players who put community first in the true humanitarian spirit. Elumba was recognized in a ceremony this evening at the Verizon Center, site of the 2009 NCAA Men's Frozen Four, in conjunction with the Hobey Baker Award and the Frozen Four Skills Challenge.
Some time back, Elumba, a four-year letter winner with the Huskies, took interest in the life of former NFL running back Gale Sayers, whose autobiography, entitled 'I Am Third,' spoke of putting God first, others second, and one's own life third. In her years at Northeastern, Elumba has lived that creed to the full.
As a sophomore, she started teaching pre-schoolers twice a week, and from there, her faith, not to mention her passion for service, carried deeper into the community. As a volunteer at a local detoxification program for Latino and African-American mothers, she helped with child development. Later, she assisted the ‘Strong Women, Strong Girls’ program of Boston by helping write grants to aid the personal development of young women. Elumba also spearheaded the creation of 'Students 4 Giving,' an on-campus initiative intended to teach
Northeastern students how to be philanthropic. Through her efforts, the program earned a $1,500 grant which will be used to benefit several less fortunate Boston neigh-borhoods. "Everyone is special," said Elumba, a Health Science major and perennial Dean's List member. "So much good can happen when you share all that you have."
For two years, Elumba has served as Northeastern's Student Athletic Advisory Committee president. During this tenure, she has been involved in many humanitarian activities but perhaps none better than her founding of the ‘Husky Wish Gift’ program. Through several fundraisers, supplemented by matching NCAA funds, the new program helped raise over $4,000 for Boston area individuals and community organizations dedicated to increasing opportunities for youth to engage in exercise and sports. Then, Elumba gave even more.
In the summer of 2007, Elumba traveled to Mexico where she worked for several weeks at a local hospital, helping physicians deliver primary care to local residents as well as running private health campaigns in isolated communities.
The following summer, having long admired the work of Mother Theresa of Calcutta, Elumba traveled to India and spent nearly six weeks volunteering with the same missionary organization Mother Theresa once served. There, she worked with impoverished, handicapped, and mentally disabled patients, helping provide acute care. "The language barrier was an obstacle in giving care," said Elumba, "but everyone understood love."
Back in Boston, Elumba volunteered in various capacities for the Boston Medical Center. At the same time she coordinated activities for Boston Healthcare for the Homeless, working to develop healthy relationships with patients through creativity, limit setting and communication skills.
"I am blown away by being named to this award," said Elumba, who plans on attending a missionary training program next year before entering medical school. "I don't even think I deserve it, but being recognized for this honor is merely a testament to the notion of what can happen when you put others first. When you do that, amazing things can happen."